What’s Growing On? April 2021 News from Grow Education
by Adam Davenport, Grow Education Program Manager
With the spring rains come new opportunities for Grow Education and New Bedford Public School students! Throughout April lots of movement has happened on the building of brand-new garden beds at 6 of the district’s elementary schools. This infrastructure will be the basis of an outdoor classroom (eventually at every elementary school) where Grow Education can assist teachers in connecting experiential lessons to nutrition, healthy living, and a healthy environment.
A Pew Charitable Trust study shows, ‘When schools offer school gardens, 44.2% of students eat more fruits and vegetables.’ When students eat more fruits and vegetables, they have more resilient immune systems and clear focus in the classroom! This is our small role in helping New Bedford increase its resilience. Building a resilient city requires Food Security, which can be as much about accessibility as education, knowledge, cultural responsiveness and healthy eating habits.
We especially would like to thank Bruce Delano and his team from Delano Landscaping who has volunteered his time and service to build the gardens at Gomes and Hayden McFadden schools. Bruce grew up just blocks away from Gomes school, and is a help to Grow and a great asset to the community!
For our last bit of exciting news, New Bedford Public Schools partnered with the Marion Institute and we have received funding from the city’s Community Preservation Act grant to build the next 6 gardens and add educational features to all the spaces! These gardens will be built this summer. Next school year these gardens at our partner schools will be the landscape for Grow’s year-long programming.